Hi and welcome to my very first blog post. First and foremost I am Mum to a very lively, inquisitive and funny 7 year old boy. We spend most of our days when not at school or work walking in and around the local countryside or down at the beach. I have always been an avid walker and conserving the environment around us is very important and this attitude has naturally rubbed off on my son. When we are at home we are usually cooking or snuggled up with hot chocolate watching a film. As well as being Mum I am also a Teaching Assistant and a qualified nutritionist. As half term was approaching I thought that would be a good starting point for my first blog post.
The half term started with gorgeous clear blue skies so it was off out for the day. After filling up on cheese toasties and gorgeous homemade chocolate and fudge from Darts Farm we drove down to Exmouth beach for a walk to blow away the cobwebs. Exmouth is one of my favourite places to go. When B was a baby we used to live right on the seafront and I would spend most of my days strolling along the front while he slept soundly in the pushchair. Even when it was raining I would go and sit on the sheltered benches and just watch the waves coming in and out. As we walked down onto the beach we saw some horses galloping along the water’s edge, I tried to get my camera out in time but by the time I had it held up ready to take a picture they had finished and were walking back off the beach. We spent ages dodging waves and finding interesting stones and shells to bring home.
Along came Tuesday and with it, the rain. We made plans with every intention of wrapping ourselves up in our warmest coats and woolly hats and heading off into the countryside to do some bird watching and hopefully tire out B, who no matter how hard you try to tire out always seems to have mountains of energy left at the end of the day. After a big plate of requested pancakes w/ banana and honey for breakfast, out we went. The sky above us was blue with only a few white fluffy clouds. A few minutes in the clouds began to grow and get darker. Imagine our disappointment when we started to feel trickles of rain coming down, then came the down pour followed by the hail. We decided to abandon our walk and go home. Cue whining from my son about how much he had been looking forward to the walk and how boring his day was now going to be if he couldn’t climb trees or go searching for ants. He is very interested in ants at the moment and can spend ages watching them scurrying around crevasses in the concrete going back and forth looking for food. So I now have to come up with a host of indoor activities to keep my son entertained at home for the day. We then decided that we would make some salt dough as I had all the ingredients already in the cupboard.
Salt Dough Recipe
- 1 cup salt
- 2 cups flour
- ½ cup water
Then we decided to make some chocolate balls. We made our own chocolate by melting some coconut oil and mixing with a splash of milk, honey and some cocoa powder. We made 2 fillings, one was a coconut berry filling which I made by heating some frozen mixed berry’s in a saucepan w/ some honey. I then added it to some desiccated coconut and mixed it all together. The second filling was peanut butter and honey mixed w/ coconut. Next I rolled them into small balls and dipped them in the chocolate mixture and laid them out on a baking sheet. Then we put them in the freezer for about 15 minutes. The coconut oil in the chocolate will solidify when cold. At the end of the 15 minutes I look them out and dipped them in the chocolate again to make 2 coats of chocolate and put them back in the freezer and left them there overnight.
We decided we would have fish pie for tea. While B sat and watched his favourite DVD, I set about cooking. It tends to come out different each time as I tend to use whatever I have in the fridge. To make the mash I used 2 baking potatoes chopped and brought to the boil. I then simmer them for about 15 -20 mins on a low heat. Then I make the white sauce by melting a tablespoon of butter in a pan, then I stir in 1 tablespoon of flour, next I add 1 cup of milk along with some salt and pepper to taste and a handful of chopped spring onions and gently stir over a medium heat until thickened. When the sauce has thickened I added a bag of frozen fish pie mix along with some frozen peas and spooned into an oven proof dish, then I spooned the mashed potato on top and grated some cheese over the top. I cooked the pie at 200’ for about half an hour until it was golden brown.
On Thursday the sun was back and slightly warmer weather. We decided to make the most of it and go for a long countryside walk. I love living in the countryside because you can just step out the front door and be in the middle of nowhere in a matter of minutes. The best parts of the walk were seeing a pheasant fly past and a possible hare running across the road. I’m pretty sure it was too big to have been a rabbit and it didn’t have dark enough fur to have been a fox. We decided to silently approach the field it had run into and stood watching for something to confirm what we had seen but whatever it was had quickly disappeared.
The rest of the half term was spent just chilling out at home, playing games of Boggle, having Mario Kart races, building Lego and cuddling up to watch movies. It is now Sunday evening and I am sat here with a cup of tea contemplating what the next half of the spring term will bring.